Power outage discredits NFL’s Super Bowl site rule

The 34-minute power outage at the Super Bowl in New Orleans proved there’s nothing magical about Sun Belt stadiums, despite the NFL’s preference for holding the game in Southern climes. Nor is there anything foolproof about indoor stadiums.

Since the first Super Bowl in 1967, the league has picked New Orleans to host 10 of the 47 championships, with Florida or southern California getting most of the others. The decision to hold next year’s game at New Jersey’s new Meadowlands stadium required an unusual waiver of the rule favoring domes and warmer climates.

Yet as the outage shows, weather isn’t the only potential game-day snag, and it seems rather abritrary to disqualify Northern cities on the basis of climate when so many other factors affect a football game. If the fans can handle a 34-minute wait in Louisiana, they’ll be able to deal with the threat of snow in New England. Like Sunday’s outage, Northern weather might even add a dramatic twist to the game.